Results Run Down
Ultimately the GTS 450 just loses out across the board to the ATI 5770, though there really isn’t a lot in it. On occasions it will beat out the slightly more expensive card, but in the end I would give the lead to the ATI card. In the wattage comparison we had a bit of a stalemate, but I’d say that with most PCs spending more time at idle than full load, it’s better to have lower power consumption in that mode; so the GTS 450 wins that one.
To overclock the GTS 450 I used nVidia’s nTune utility to tweak the GPU and memory frequencies. Starting at 810MHZ I was able to ramp things up to a stable 950MHZ with a little more room to spare. Bringing it to just below the 1GHZ mark did start to give stability problems, but impressively this does bring it inline with some of the fastest GTS 450s out there.
Memory wise I couldn’t get much out of it. In the end I was only able to gain an extra 30MHZ or so out of it. I would imagine adding RAMsinks would improve this to help keep them cool.
Noise wise the card was pretty good. If things get really amped up then it can get a bit noisy but this is rare. For the tweakers who plan to manually ajust their fan speed, I’d say 50% was a pretty safe bet as it keeps it almost silent. Anything up from 75% is pretty annoying and I wouldn’t recommend it.
The GTS 450 is about £10 less than your average ATI 5770, costing about £90-£95.